After the first episode of The Celebrity Apprentice had aired, it was pretty much a given that Leeza Gibbons would be named this season’s winner.
Gibbons seemed to playing on a different level than the other contestants and could seemingly do no wrong. On the rare occasions that her team lost a task, Gibbons might as well have been given a chair beside the Donald because she was looked at as more of an advisor instead of a member of the losing team.
Throughout the competition, Leeza had the Midas touch… leading Team Infinity to five straight wins and then helping Team Vortex end their five-task losing streak as soon as she joined Geraldo and company.
In the final task, Liza managed to raise $324,000 for Leeza’s Care Connection, trouncing Geraldo who raised $146,000 (although Geraldo raised a season high of $725,000 total). The former daytime television host effectively used her team members (Johnny Damon, Brandi Glanville, and Kevin Jonas) to produce a promotional video for Universal Orlando that was spot-on and delivered a magical performance from Olivia Newton-John for the presentation portion of her assignment. The combination likely made naming this season’s winner an easy choice for Mr. Trump.
I caught up with Leeza at Monday’s Celebrity Apprentice finale and we discussed her active presence on social media and the pressures that come with being the first female winner since the late Joan Rivers was crowned champion. I also asked her what she attributed her success to during the season.
Murtz Jaffer is the world's foremost reality television expert and was the host of Reality Obsessed which aired on the TVTropolis and Global Reality Channels in Canada. He has professional writing experience at the Toronto Sun, National Post, TV Guide Canada, TOROMagazine.com and was a former producer at Entertainment Tonight Canada. He was also the editor at Weekendtrips.com.
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